The Dodge Journey Years To Avoid (7 Common Reasons Explained)

If you haven’t heard of the Dodge Journey, there is no need to feel left out. This is not the most popular car out there. In fact, very little is known about this car model. But I don’t think that’s fair because it is a superb vehicle.

After extensive research on dodge journey owners review and reports, I am going to provide all common reasons that will confirm you which dodge journey years to avoid before you purchase.

What Is Dodge Journey?

The Dodge Journey is an SUV that was in production for a very short time of 11 years but came to a close in 2020. So, why are you talking about a vehicle that is not even being produced anymore?

Because it is a good car, with many second-hand models out there that we can score for cheaper. After all, good cars are not exactly affordable nowadays, are they?

But that being said, I’m sure you have gathered from the title that this piece focuses more on the models you should not get. So that is what we will dive into first!

The Dodge Journey Years To Avoid

While the model was in production for a short time, there are a few years in particular that you should avoid. They come with a bunch of issues you would never want in a car, no matter what you use them for.

The years you need to stay away from are:

  • 2009
  • 2010
  • 2011
  • 2012

Why You Should Stay Away from Them?

Each of these years comes with its own problems; some have stayed on for many years. Let me break them down for you so that it is easier to understand.

01. Problems With Brakes

A car with a brake problem is basically one of the biggest red flags and fails, making this the biggest issue that the Dodge Journey faced amongst all its other problems.

The issue surfaced in 2009 when it first started selling. However, once reviews started coming out about the Dodge Journey’s brake problems, it started selling in fewer numbers.

What makes a brake issue so dangerous is that it can be potentially life-threatening, resulting in large expenses down the line.

The specific issues that the car faced included the calipers locking up and premature brake and rotor wear. The not-so-dangerous problem was that the brakes were noisy too. The latter is definitely not life-threatening, but not a positive quality either.

02. Problems With the Engine

Following the brake issue, the next most serious problem the vehicle faced was regarding its engines. Unfortunately, engine problems can also be deadly, like brake issues.

Things like the engine suddenly stopping mid-drive, making a ticking noise, or refusing to start at 60,000 miles indicate that it is facing problems and needs to be checked out.

And both of these are issues that users have faced with the Dodge Journey between 2009 and 2012. But, of course, the more of these problems you face, the more repairs you will need, making the process expensive.

But that was not the entire story. The two engine options that came with the Dodge Journey had low fuel economy, where the models could go up to 23 mpg on a highway. Comparatively, this was not good, as other SUVs provided at least 20 mpg even on city roads.

03. Water Leakage Problems

Now that really is not something you ever want to hear. Still, unfortunately, users of the Dodge Journey during the mentioned years had to.

The inside of the vehicle has been vulnerable to water leaks, leading to very uncomfortable seating situations for the users. This was especially common when driving at a low mileage of 58,000 miles.

In most cases, the leak problems were serious enough for the users to seek professional help. This, of course, added to the maintenance costs. After all, no one wants a wet carpet simply with a little rain.

04. Problem With the Remote Keyless Entry

This has been, by far, one of Dodge Journey’s biggest complaints. So many users have faced the ‘key not detected’ message, which can be truly dreadful to deal with regularly. Just imagine you have to leave your car door unlocked because of this software issue – not something you recommend, right?

05. Problems With Accessories

As if all these major functional problems weren’t enough, car models between these years also came with many issues regarding their accessories. These ranged from bad doors to bad windows to cramped seats and lots more.

06. A Cheap Feel

No matter how much we want something to be affordable or cheap, the moment it starts feeling cheap, we don’t want it anymore. The case with the Dodge Journey is very similar.

Most of the liking points about this car were that it was more affordable. Still, at the same time, the car’s interior felt cheap and uncomfortable, which put users off.

07. An Uncomfortable Experience

I was pretty impressed when I heard of the third row that came with the SUV. And so were users until they had actually used it. Even though a third row was placed, it was impractical and uncomfortable, making it useless, hence, a turnoff for everybody who bought the car.

These Dodge Journey Models Are Safe to Buy

Above, you can see all the problems that came with the Dodge Journey. But do note these problems are specific to their initial years of production, aka 2009 -2012.

So, we cannot entirely rule this out as a bad car but more as a car that has had some tough years. That being said, if you are in the market for a secondhand SUV, then surely check out the Dodge Journey from these years:

  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018
  • 2019

Why I Am Recommending These Models?

With the problems out of the way, I want to highlight what the Dodge Journey offers, which you will appreciate. First, I want you to take a minute to understand why you should consider this little-known and unpopular vehicle.

The Dodge Journey was the first midsized SUV in the market which got people’s attention. But that wasn’t all. It also came with some perks.

These are Sturdy Vehicles

The Dodge Journey made some pretty strong and sturdy vehicles in the short time they were in production. This especially goes for their models Durango, RAM, and Charger, which are well known for being powerful SUVs.

These Vehicles Have a Low MSRP

A selling point for buyers on a low budget, these vehicles came with a low Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price or MSRP as well.

To Conclude

The Dodge Journey might seem like a forgettable device for the most part. Still, upon some inspection, I can strongly say that it is not a bad vehicle. All you have to keep in mind when buying one is the year. Stay away from models between 2009 and 2012; if you are serious about buying one, focus on models between 2015 and 2019.

Whatever issues the Dodge Journey faced during their initial years of production, they did patch those up mostly during the latter years, resulting in lower complaints. It’s clear as daylight.

Not to mention, the brand has some large, sturdy, and strong SUVs that come at low prices even today, making them more attractive to the buyer on a budget.